— The final 2022 CIF Southern Section polls for soccer were released Tuesday, Dec. 13, and here is a look at the local area teams that have cracked the rankings. Our weekly issue goes to print each week prior to the release of the most updated Southern Section polls, which reflect old polls and are handled by the CIF-SS Advisory Committees that oversee each individual sport. The CIF-Southern Section office will be closed for Winter Break starting Monday, Dec. 19, and polls will resume, along with their regular hours again Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2023.
The Temecula Valley girls continue to be a dominant force in Division 1, despite falling to Santiago (6-0) by a score of 3-1 this past Thursday, Dec. 15. The match was a showdown between two of three top-ranked teams in the Division 1 polls (Oaks Christian is No. 1). It also was the first time the two teams played since last season’s Division 1 championship match, which Temecula Valley won 2-0.
The Golden Bears got hung up defending the ball more than they could gather themselves on offense against the Sharks, who outshot Temecula Valley 12-3 in the second half alone. Santiago had five consecutive shutout games to open the season, and, according to local media updates, almost became the first team to shut out Temecula Valley (9-3-2) in their last 47 matches.
With a testament to their grit, the Golden Bears capitalized off a penalty kick from Annika Jost in the fifth minute of stoppage time to save them from getting that dreaded goose egg. Santiago goalkeeper Taylor Clark recorded five saves, while Temecula Valley’s Elizabeth Ludwig finished with seven. After the loss, Temecula Valley packed up their vans and hit the road this past weekend for Northern Californian where they competed in the Tri-City soccer tournament, going 1-1-1 on the road.
The Great Oak boys’ soccer team had the highest ranking of the local teams, coming in at No. 4 in the Division 4 polls. The Wolfpack have a 3-2-1 record on the season with wins over Moreno Valley, Tahquitz (No. 6, Div. 7) and Bloomington, as well as a draw with Palm Desert (No. 3, Div. 5).
CIF-SS GIRLS SOCCER POLLS
(Selected by the CIF-SS Girls Soccer Committee)
DIVISION 1 & 2
No. 3 – Temecula Valley
No. 1 – Hemet
No. 8 – Liberty
No. 10 – Heritage
No. 9 – San Jacinto
CIF-SS BOYS SOCCER POLLS
(Selected by the CIF-SS Boys Soccer Committee)
No. 16 – Citrus Hill
No. 4 – Great Oak
No. 5 – San Jacinto
No. 7 – Temescal Canyon
No. 6 – Tahquitz
JP Raineri can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.